Homemade Chicken Nuggets

Yum
Homemade chicken nuggets taste so much better than drive-thru nuggets. They're easy to prepare and bake in just 20 minutes. Here's the recipe.

I remember the first time Mawie, my grandmother, fixed homemade chicken nuggets, Parmesan noodles, and peas for me. Since then I've prepared this recipe dozens of times for my family and we all love it.

I actually simplified Mawie's original recipe by using store-bought seasoned bread crumbs instead of adding the thyme, basil, and salt to unseasoned crumbs, as called for in her original recipe. The most recent time I baked chicken nuggets I had panko bread crumbs on hand and used those along with a few good shakes of Italian seasoning and a touch of garlic powder.

Homemade chicken nuggets taste so much better than what you get at the drive-thru. In my opinion, baked really is better than deep fried! Most importantly, when you make them yourself you know exactly what's going into them. For me, that's very important as I try to avoid food with a high sodium content and flavor-enhancing ingredients.

Here's the recipe.

Homemade Chicken Nuggets


3 boneless chicken breast halves or a package of fresh chicken breast tenderloins (20 ounces)
1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs (or panko bread crumbs and added Italian seasoning, see above)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted

Cut chicken into pieces about 1 1/2 inches square. Combine crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Dip nuggets in melted butter, then in crumbs. Place on foil-lined baking sheet in a single layer. Bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes (watch that the bottoms don't burn). 

Serves 3.


Most recently I used parchment paper to line the baking sheet and the chicken didn't stick at all as it tends to do with foil. The panko crumbs that I used didn't get as brown as the regular bread crumbs, but to remedy that you could turn the chicken halfway through baking. I just don't like to take the extra time. Just be sure not to overcook or burn the bottoms while you're waiting for the tops to brown.

I serve chicken nuggets with Parmesan noodles and peas, like my Mawie did. To make Parmesan noodles, just cook egg noodles as directed on the package, drain and return to the hot pan. Add a good-sized dollop of sour cream and a good sprinkling of Parmesan cheese and stir it all in. If I don't have sour cream on hand, I just stir in some butter and the cheese. To borrow a phrase, ummm, ummm, good! Kid- and husband-approved, too!

Do you like chicken nuggets? Do you drive thru or make your own? Think you'll try this recipe? I'd love to read your comments!


Originally published 11/20/06. Updated 10/7/16

11 comments:

  1. A great recipe for nuggets! I just taught my grand daughter how to make these, only we use flour, bread crumbs and egg to do the dredging. She is a pretty picky eater and doesn't like to "touch" raw foods and such. But you know we mothers have to get around those kinds of things to get kids to eat right, so since she is a whale/dolphin lover I told her this was "squid" we were making for the dolphins, she jumped right in, dredged the chicken pieces in the ingredients and couldn't wait to eat it! She wants to make it every time she is here and I don't have a bit of trouble getting her to eat!
    Cheri
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  2. Love your great recipes Miss Susan. these sound delicious and I will try them out later this week. Thank you again for making me a better cook!

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    1. Grammie O, that's the best compliment ever. Thank you! Hope you enjoy your homemade nuggets!

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  3. I always say there is nothing better than homemade!! I love your recipe and my grandsons are going to love it too. Thanks Susan!!

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    1. You know, there's something about the homemade chicken nuggets that make them more appealing to adults than the drive-thru version. Better make plenty when you feed those boys!

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  4. I have never made homemade chicken nuggets! What a great idea and recipe. We will definitely be trying this recipe soon.

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    1. I hope you do and hope your family enjoys their nuggets!

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  5. I've never thought about using melted butter, I will have to try your version next time I make them. We used to just do flour, egg and the breadcrumb and Parmesan mix you use.

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    1. I think your method of using flour and egg would put more emphasis on the breading; I'm thinking chicken fried chicken and I love a good chicken fried chicken! With the butter, you get more chicken and just a touch of the crunch on the outside of the nugget. For those who can't use butter, your option might be an excellent alternative. Thanks for sharing!

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  6. I never eat fast food or even frozen chicken nuggets because I try to eat organic and pastured meat. However, I definitely could make my own. Thanks for the recipe.

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    1. I'm guessing you're experienced at adapting recipes, Angela. Should be pretty easy to adapt this one using organic ingredients. Hope you try it, hope you love it! Thanks so much for commenting.

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